The Turkish government will soon introduce a bill to avoid what it calls dissemination of fake news through social media, pro-government Türkiye newspaper reported on Tuesday.
According to the bill, suspects will be sentenced from three months to two years in prison for insults on social media while those who disseminate fake news will receive prison sentence ranging from one to five years.
The legal regulation that the government has been working on for social media will be debated at parliament in October, Türkiye reported.
The government also plans to establish a “Social Media Presidency” to monitor those who produce and spread fake news, the newspaper said.
Turkey blocked 467,011 web addresses between the enactment of the Internet law in 2007 and the end of 2020, according to the annual report of the Freedom of Expression Association (İFÖD), Bianet said.
Some criticize the government for attempting to stifle relative freedom of news outlets broadcasted over social media.
Last month, the Turkish Presidency announced that Ankara would regulate foreign-funded media based in the country and would ask them to submit a detailed report on their activities every six months.
The possible move was announced when pro-government Turkish media revealed that the U.S.-based Chrest Foundation had funded popular opposition social media outlets such as Medyascope, Bianet, Serbestiyet and video news-making platform and 140Journos amid plans for a further clampdown on independent media.